The London Borough of Lambeth has recently finished its consultation on proposals for additional licensing of HMO Properties.
The consultation with letting agents, landlords, property managers, freeholders, leaseholders, and others ended on 12th March contained proposals which sought to license all HMOs in Lambeth thus doubling the size of its current scheme.
Why is the scheme being introduced?
The council’s reasons for the introduction of this latest HMO licensing scheme in the borough is to improve accommodation standards for tenants, routing out rogue landlords and illegal HMO Properties.
The new scheme is particularly aimed at those landlords who rent out smaller HMOs who fail to ensure the correct property compliance, and acceptable conditions for their tenants. Any landlords who do not comply with the licensing, will be faced with fines. The costs of licensing HMO Properties can vary from borough to borough.
Now the consultation has closed, Lambeth Council will go through the responses and report back to the council’s cabinet with their findings and recommendations.
If the council decides to press ahead with the new licensing scheme, then it is likely to be put in place in April 2022.
How can I check my property compliance?
The HMO Services Compliance checker will help you stay one step ahead of any changes like this and help with your property compliance, so you know how any licensing changes by your local council could affect you. Just enter your postcode ? to find out more.
What is a HMO?
To determine what is an HMO we need to start with what ‘HMO’ stands for ie. House in Multiple Occupancy or House of Multiple Occupation. The standard definition of a section 254 HMO is: 3 or more tenants, more than 1 household and shared facilities.
For Section 257 HMOs, the standard definition of a section 257 HMO refers to buildings that: have been converted into self-contained flats; the conversion did not comply with the relevant Building Regulations in force at that time and still does not comply; and less than two-thirds of the flats are owner-occupied.
What is Property Licensing?
Property licensing is the Local Authority’s process of improving living standards in rental accommodation and proving that landlords are ‘fit and proper’ persons to operate these properties. The type of licence a property requires varies depending on a number of different factors, including the number of tenants and the council your property is located in.
Why is Property Licensing important?
It is important that you are aware of both the national and local authority regulations. The licensing rules are not consistent across every London borough, with each individual borough creating its own set of licensing rules. A professional licensing company should be instructed to guide you through the process. In short, the type of licence required will depend on the property itself, how it is tenanted and the borough that it is located in.
For more information about property licensing, download our guide.